I have my mom here, and I have 13 Steps to Mentalism on my screen. I click add to cart, so she can fill in the information...and it tells me it's out of stock! I need the answer quick, so please post: Is there another book that makes a good substitute for this?
"Practical Mental Effects" by Theodore Annemann is the traditional starting point for mentalists. Some find this book to be a bit dry and dated although it is a source still mined for gems by professional mentalists.
"Prism" by Max Maven is a collection of effects but is not specifically geared toward the beginner.
If you are interested in DVDs, Richard Osterlind's "Easy to Master Mental Miracles" series is, arguably, the contemporary equivalent of "Practical Mental Effects". Similarly, his more advanced "Mind Mysteries" series (especially the first 4 volumes) could be called a contemporary equivalent of "13 Steps".